Tag Archives: distribution

Amazon’s Deal With Tennessee Finalized

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — With Amazon and Tennessee in agreement over the collection of sales taxes, the online retailer on Thursday finalized its plans to open two new distribution centers in Murfreesboro and Lebanon that are expected to create 1,300 new jobs.
Seattle-based Amazon.com Inc. earlier this year agreed to a deal to expand its presence in the state, with the requirement that Amazon would start collecting Tennessee sales taxes in 2014. The retailer already has facilities in Hamilton, Bradley and Wilson counties.
Amazon says the new distribution centers will employ about 1,300 people when they are completed next fall, bringing the online retailer’s total workforce at its five Tennessee facilities to more than 3,300.
The State Funding Board last week approved $7 million in grants to make infrastructure improvements at the sites in Murfreesboro and Lebanon. Bill Hagerty, commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development, said in a memo that Amazon’s investment in the two sites totals $145 million.
Republican Gov. Bill Haslam and Amazon officials in October announced the agreement for the company to begin collecting the state’s sales tax on items sold to customers in Tennessee.
Amazon was originally granted an indefinite waiver on collecting state sales taxes as part of a deal struck by Haslam’s Democratic predecessor, Phil Bredesen, that led the company to build its first two distribution centers in Tennessee earlier this year.
Haslam has said he will introduce legislation next year to solidify the tax deal, in keeping with a state attorney general’s opinion that the executive branch can’t unilaterally waive tax collection requirements.
Conventional retailers who must collect sales tax at their Tennessee stores have criticized the deal for not requiring Amazon to do the same sooner, giving the online retailer an unfair price advantage.
Amazon also announced it will donate $20,000 to the Books from Birth Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides books to preschool children in Tennessee.
Note: News release is below

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Haslam Cuts Back on Distribution of News Clippings

(Note: This post was updated & expanded from original version)
By Erik Schelzig, Associated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — No news is not good news to hundreds of political figures who have quit receiving a popular daily roundup of state media reports e-mailed by Gov. Bill Haslam’s office.
Nearly nine out of 10 of the lawmakers, lobbyists and party officials who have relied on the daybreak email to keep atop of Tennessee political news and commentary were cut this week. The distribution list was whittled down from around 1,100 people to just 150 administration officials, legislative leaders and members of the news media.
“By culling it down, it makes it much more manageable,” Haslam spokesman David Smith said. “And we’ll use it to inform the governor’s staff, the administration and legislators.”
The summary, titled Daily News Clips, often runs 10 or more pages. It is compiled by an administration staffer who sifts through Tennessee political and government news online, condenses it and provides a Web link to the full story or opinion piece. Work on it begins hours in advance of the email that goes out well before 7 a.m. Central.
“It’s just an easy way to keep up with what’s going on around the state,” said former recipient Caleb Hemmer. “I don’t know how that’s a bad thing.”

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Amazon Eyes Knoxville, Nashville for Expansion (and political clout?)

Amazon.com is ready to double down on its economic and political bets in Tennessee by building three more distribution centers in Nashville or Knoxville — or possibly splitting the centers between the them. So reports Andy Sher.
According to an April 29 state filing, the Internet retailing giant would invest $180 million and employ about 1,700 full-time workers and 2,000 part-time or seasonal workers within two years.
That would more than double the $139 million investment Amazon is making with distribution centers in Hamilton and Bradley counties.
The revelation that Amazon is considering building more distribution centers in the Volunteer State dramatically could raise the stakes as some top Republican legislators push to make the company collect sales taxes on Tennessee sales.